I first heard an acapella choir when I was in high school. I was in a normal choir class, where no one really has to audition, and the teacher plays the piano while we sing. An acapella choir came to visit us and performed a few songs, and I fell completely in love. After that, I searched for acapella covers of all my favorite songs, and decided this right here is the literal best thing ever.
I love how so many covers are mash ups, or have just the right amount of pieces of other songs mixed in. The creativity in acapella is incredible. I was thinking about how some people argue that creativity doesn’t exist anymore because everything’s already been done. Like, apparently there are only seven basic storylines. Yet people keep telling new stories, because they can basically do mash-ups of those seven basic plotlines and turn it into something new. Acapella groups do this beautifully in their songs.
But I think the number one reason why I love acapella is (warning, this will get cheesy) because it shows how our differences can work in harmony. Think about every evil dictator plan you’ve ever heard about. Real and fictional. They usually think they can achieve world peace by making everyone the same. Differences can cause conflict, and sometimes, chaos. So, wouldn’t it be easier if we all decided on one right way, all followed that? What if we all just sang the same lead line? Beautiful music right there, right?
We know this doesn’t work. We can’t all try to fit into the same mold. We need to embrace what we really are, while accepting that others are embracing something different that works for them. And when we do, holy crap can we ever get something beautiful. Some folks are meant to sing tenor, or baritone. I’m meant to sing bass. And sometimes we can change up our own parts, too. But when we all sing our different parts as one, we all sound beautiful together. And sure, it can take some work. Some tuning, adjustments, practice and patience.
Acapella music highlights the best way our differences can work together. We need all the parts. Sometimes you’ll be in the spotlight singing the melody, sometimes you need to step back, let others shine, and sing do-wah do-wah do-wah in the background for a bit. It’s still an important part.
"But doesn't normal music highlight that too?" Eh, maybe, but not as much. With acapella it's just humans making all the sounds, and just listening to each other. With nothing else to rely on. It really puts the focus on the people. How cool is it that we alone can make all those sounds into real, beautiful song?
So, next time you’re frustrated with someone because you just don’t get why they think or act so darn differently than you, think about singing in harmony with them. They don’t have to change. You don’t have to change. Your differences can actually make you both better together.